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New Beginnings [Dec. 29th, 2014|07:00 am]
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My new year is with my birthday in early March. I'm in a much better position to be optimistic then with the lengthening of the days and the greening of the year.

But in getting the piles of reminders for December and early January sorted, i ran across an e-workbook for preparing for a new year, spread out over four weeks. Given my life, spreading it out over eight weeks seemed wise.

It starts with wishing.

I'm not sure how good a wisher i am, but i wrote out wishes for different parts of my life, scribbling away with the digital pen on my iPad. I do like the combination of tactile with digital!

Wishing does lead me to some awareness of being thankful. I am particularly aware that i am delighted to find that Travelsmith makes dresses that are consistently sized and cut in a way that is both flattering and fits. I have been buying them for a couple years now (gifts from the catalog, and then filling in as dresses come in at my budget price of $20 on eBay). Pants have never fit me right, not when i was a skinny stick as a teen nor as my full figured self now. In general, I am very comfortable about my appearance.

Not my fitness level: the last half of the year was even more sedentary than before -- and i would have had to describe myself as sedentary then. But my ankles and feet are mostly happy these days, and i have no excuse to not walk. Christine's got the bike back and happy, so even if (when, please) we have another spate of rain, i should be able to exercise. (We have a stand that converts the bike to a stationary bike.)


One of the gifts received this year was Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi. I am not very good at following recipes, usually with acceptable results. Last night's attempt at making turnip dumplings inspired by the parsnip dumplings was as disaster. The first fail was not recognizing how important it was for the batter to be stiff and to follow the direction to steam off water from the mashed veggie. I made another fail by folding in crepe batter: this was also far too runny.

Even after adding much more dry mix, the batter seemed more fluid, like cake batter, than stiff, so i poured it all into a pan and baked it. I think i have turnip bread now. And it needs salt.

OK, overconfidence in the kitchen has now been adjusted to an appropriate level of humility.

Leek fritters are next from the cookbook.


[User Picture]From: tx_cronopio
2014-12-29 04:05 pm (UTC)
Turnip bread, LOL. Sounds like something I would do!

Motivation works differently for everyone, but the one thing that has really helped me keep my exercise consistent of late is a Fitbit. I have the cheapest one, the Zip, it was about $50.
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[User Picture]From: elainegrey
2014-12-30 03:24 pm (UTC)
I didn't find the fitbit additionally motivating when i had it a couple years ago: just keeping track of when i go for a walk keeps the goal in mind for me.

Lovely puppy icon! Happy New Year to you!
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[User Picture]From: johnpalmer
2014-12-30 12:07 am (UTC)
Hee! But on the plus side, you have the courage to try - that's something I often lack.

(Yes, I know.I could just throw the damn thing out if I don't like it. But the notion of likely failure still paralyzes me.)
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[User Picture]From: elainegrey
2014-12-30 03:21 pm (UTC)
When i was in graduate school, with so much of my research hinging on precision, i started learning to let go of perfectionism elsewhere in my life. Like any habit, it takes energy to change, but it's one of the few habits that still takes less net energy to enact. (It's just the energy of changing all that self talk.)

I've always been comfortable with ambiguity, though, which may be why i found it possible to fight off the perfectionism in some places.

What i hate is waste, so the thought of the ingredients and the time in the oven makes me want to salvage as much as i can. It was good with cheddar melted on it!
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